It’s Lyme Disease Awareness Month – What Fairfax Station VA Residents Should Know
Thanks to the warmer weather, most of us in Fairfax County are spending more time outdoors. While time in the sun is great, it’s important to be aware of the enemy that could be lurking right in our yards. May is Lyme disease awareness month, which is appropriate because tick bites are now starting to go up.
A major challenge that people with Lyme disease face is delayed or incorrect diagnoses. That’s because in many cases, different people present with different symptoms. Even worse, many of the symptoms associated with Lyme disease are similar to those of other ailments like influenza. As a result, many patients with the disease are sent home without a proper prescription.
Fortunately, researchers have taken note of this and of the need for more research to improve Lyme disease diagnoses. One of them is a Master’s student at Queen’s University. She is inviting people that have been victims of tick bites to participate in her study:
Queen’s student Emilie Norris-Roozmon says these inconsistencies in diagnosis aren’t uncommon.
“There are many people who have been bitten by ticks and who feel that their stories have not been listened to,” she says.
The Master’s candidate is conducting a study to better understand the disease.
“This is an opportunity to bridge that gap and to figure out how we can help the care of tick-borne disease patients.” Read more at CTV News…
Participants for this study will fill out an anonymous survey. The data collected will help track symptoms, whether they are mild, severe, or non-existent, as well as how much time it took for the symptoms to show up. The hope is that the health outcomes for individuals bitten by ticks will improve.
The hallmark sign that you have Lyme disease is the ‘bull’s-eye’ rash that looks like its name suggests. However, not everyone diagnosed with the disease will have this rash, which can show up between three and 30 days after the bite.
Up to a month after the infected tick bite, you could get fever, chills, headache, fatigue, muscle and joint aches, and swollen lymph nodes. The rash only occurs in 70 to 80 percent of infected people, not all.
Later signs, from days to months after the infected bite, can include: severe headaches and neck stiffness, additional rashes on other areas of the body, loss of muscle tone or droop on one or both sides of the face, arthritis, pain in tendons, muscles, joints, bones, and nerves, heart palpitations, episodes of dizziness or shortness of breath. Read more WWLP…
Numbness, shooting pains or tingling in the feet or hands are still more symptoms of Lyme disease. It’s worth noting that proper antibiotic treatment is usually effective against Lyme disease if caught early. However, there’s no better treatment than prevention. Use bug spray before, and check yourself for ticks after you go outdoors.
You can also keep yourself and your loved ones safe by keeping ticks out of your yard. Backyard Bug Patrol provides effective tick prevention services in Fairfax Station. Get in touch with us today.